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3 Diseases Caused by Asbestos Exposure

It is a fact that you should be cautious of asbestos. In its natural state, these little fibers can cause a mess of trouble within your respiratory system. Many of the conditions that can evolve from asbestos exposure are incurable and deadly diseases, including:

Asbestosis

Asbestosis is the scarring and inflammation of lung tissue caused by exposure to asbestos fibers. When in their natural state, asbestos fibers are microscopic, yet strong and resilient. They can become embedded within lung tissue if breathed in by an individual, whose body will reject the foreign objects and attempt to remove them.

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White blood cells attempt to remove asbestos from lung tissue, but are destroyed in the process. The destruction of white blood cells attempting to remove asbestos from the system attracts scarring cells to the site, resulting in tissue scarring and inflammation. Ultimately, the lungs' ability to deliver oxygen to the blood and remove carbon dioxide is reduced, causing serious problems.

Asbestos Pleural Disease

While asbestosis occurs within the lungs, asbestos pleural disease occurs within the thin lining between the lungs and chest wall, an area called the pleura. If asbestos fibers are able to work their way out of the lungs, they can get caught within the pleura, which can lead to its thickening. This thickening reduces the elasticity of the lungs and evolve into other asbestos-related conditions, including pleural plaques.

Pleural plaques are localized and well-defined areas of calcified pleural thickening. Pleural plaques affect the lungs' function much less than pleural thickening, as they are usually in one small location as opposed to the large area affected by thickening.

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Pleural Mesothelioma

Pleural mesothelioma is the most common type of cancer caused by asbestos exposure. Instead of thickening and plaque formation within the pleura, tumors commonly develop that can spread to other parts of the body. Many victims experience a shortness of breath, but it is often not enough to prompt worry of mesothelioma or cancer. Other symptoms can take ten to fifty years to appear.

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Now that you are familiar with 3 different kinds of asbestos-related diseases, you will know why it is wise to follow the advice of those warning signs. Exposing yourself to asbestos could lead to disease and, even worse, your death. For more information, or to schedule a free initial consultation with an experienced lawyer, please contact Brayton Purcell, LLP today


Sources: 1, 2

Image Credits:

Public Domain

"Doctor greeting patient" by hang_in_there, used under CC BY

It is a fact that you should be cautious of asbestos. In its natural state, these little fibers can cause a mess of trouble within your respiratory system. Many of the conditions that can evolve from asbestos exposure are incurable and deadly diseases.

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